Anti-clotting medication studied in children with severe inflammation caused by COVID-19

Doctors say they continue to find connections between blood clots and COVID-19. Researchers at Johns Hopkins All Children’s hospital have now launched a clinical trial to study the use of anti-clotting medication as a treatment in children.

Lead researcher Anthony Sochet said the clots form not just in the lungs but throughout the body.

“Everybody who’s hospitalized with a COVID-19 infection whether you’re very sick or not, you’re put on medicine to keep you from having clots,” said Sochet, an assistant professor of anesthesiology and critical care medicine.

Anti-clotting medication is regularly used for adults to treat the effects of COVID-19, but its effect on children is unknown, he said.

“In children, we sometimes do that. But we actually don’t have any data to say that it’s safe, and we don’t have any data to say that it works,” Sochet added. “So where our study drug Enoxaparin comes in is that it tries to prevent the complications of the infection itself. And the complication, in this case, would be the forming of these clots in all the major organs.”

The trial will look at not just COVID-19 patients but children admitted to the hospital with COVID-related illnesses, including multi-system inflammatory syndrome in children or MIS-C. The Florida Department of Health has reported 12 cases of MIS-C as of June 26.

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“It’s almost as if the body has had an infection from COVID-19,  and then two to four weeks later they often develop symptoms from it,” said Sochet.

Researchers plan to study how the medication works for about a year.

“This is what it takes in order to battle a major pandemic like this, people coming together, scientists coming together and saying ‘We can answer this question. Well let’s do it as a team’” said Sochet.

Researchers said they need at least 40 child patients for the trial, and they are working with 15 to 20 children’s hospitals across the country.